According to rebels in the Tigray region, the United States envoy Mike Hammer was in Ethiopia on Tuesday to seek a halt to renewed clashes between pro-government forces and Tigrayan rebels in the country’s war-torn north. This information was provided by a spokesman for the United Nations, who told AFP that Hammer’s mission was to try to bring an end to the fighting.
Getachew Reda, a spokesman for the Tigray rebel authorities, which have been in conflict with the federal government since November 2020, stated late Monday on the official Tigrai TV, which is broadcast on the internet, that Tigrayan troops were defending themselves against joint offensives by the Ethiopian and Eritrean armies. This conflict has been going on since November 2020.
In recent days, the United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that United States Trade Representative Robert Hammer would be traveling to Ethiopia in order to “demand for an immediate end of hostilities and the start of peace talks.” On the other hand, the United States authorities in Washington, as well as their embassy in Addis Ababa, have stayed silent on this trip ever since it took place.
The Ethiopian government did not immediately react to AFP’s inquiries for details on the visit of Mr. Hammer or on the rebels’ claims that they had committed atrocities. Hanna Serwaa Tetteh, the special envoy for the United Nations to the Horn of Africa, “met (her counterpart), the US special envoy,” on Monday in Addis Ababa, according to a spokeswoman for the United Nations in New York City who spoke with AFP. The spokesperson went on to say that there are currently no plans in place for the two special envoys to carry out a mission together.
As of the 24th of August, fighting between the Ethiopian federal government and the rebel authorities of this northernmost region of Ethiopia, which has been in conflict since November 2020, resumed on the borders of Tigray after a ceasefire that had been in place for the previous five months. This dashed hopes for talks that had been ongoing since June. Since June, the two sides, who blame each other for the start of these new hostilities, have said more than once that they are willing to negotiate, even though they continue to disagree about how the terms of any future talks should be set up.
“There is very intense fighting” in several areas of Tigray and on the outskirts of the region, and “our forces are holding out and not just blocking the enemy offensive, but in some cases launching counter-offensives.” “There is very intense fighting” in several areas of Tigray and on the outskirts of the region. Because there is no access for journalists to northern Ethiopia, independent verification is impossible. Additionally, telecommunications networks run very erratically, making independent verification hard.